Digital Path to Siva Now Available in Tamil

Our newest publication Path to Siva was recently translated into Tamil, and now that Tamil version is available for free at our website.

Tamil Path to Siva Book Launch Event

Satguru and Sannyasin Shanmuganathaswami have attended the Tamil Path to Siva launch event. Satguru was received with beautiful fanfare. He then proceeded to present the book and some of the material it contains. The book is already being distributed to many schools in Malaysia. It is a much needed resource for the youth today and now will reach a much broader audience.

History of Hindu India – PART 5

We are delighted to announce the completion of our five part video documentary series, "The History of Hindu India," based on the book of the same title. Both are available now on YouTube. Parts One (posted in 2014), Two and Three (both posted in 2015) have been very popular , receiving respectively, 2.6 million hits, 1.3 million hits and 965,000 hits along with tens of thousands of "thumbs up" and hundreds of positive comments. The History of Hindu India series was developed by the editors of Hinduism Today magazine in collaboration with Dr. Shiva Bajpai, Professor Emeritus of History, California State University Northridge. It is intended to provide an authentic presentation of the history of India and Hinduism for use in American middle and high school classes, as well as Hindu temple study groups and general presentations on the Hindu religion and history. Part Four is based on the fourth chapter of the textbook, "The History of Hindu India," published in 2011. It covers Indian history from 1850 to 1947, from when the British Crown took over direct control of India from the East India Company to Independence. Under British rule, economic exploitation of the subcontinent increased, resulting in frequent famine and deprivation across the once wealthy land. A determined and mostly nonviolent freedom movement emerged and finally succeeded, resulting in the formation of modern India and Muslim Pakistan in 1947. Part five is based on the fifth chapter of the textbook. It covers Indian history from 1947 to the present day. Opening with Nehru's famed speech on August 15, 1947, it describes the formation of the new government, development of the constitution, invasion of Kashmir by Pakistan, the horrors of partition, formation of states along linguistic lines, and efforts to uplift the lower classes. It covers the religions of India along with religious strife and its causes, Hindu pilgrimage using Rameswaram as an example, Ayurveda, the impact of Hinduism in the modern world and finally a nod to the popularity of Bollywood and Indian cuisine. For more information and for class lesson plans based on the book, visit www.hinduismtoday.com/education/. This documentary is directed and produced by Sushma Khadepaun. Narrated by Roger (Raj) Narayan. Post Production Jalebi Khao, LA. Funded by the Uberoi Foundation, Institute for Curriculum Advancement. Part One: https://youtu.be/dBZRTzXARWM Part Two: https://youtu.be/j0kLX2aPgo8 Part Three: https://youtu.be/Lr8Qx0SyrYI

Four Great Tamil Saints — How We Look At Astrology

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami

Bodhinatha's Latest Upadeshas - Commentaries on Path to Siva
Who Are the Four Great Tamil Saints? Path to Siva, Lesson 39 (January 17,2018)

Our saints have sung that Siva is within us, and we are within Siva." Having devotion to Siva, having Siva in your heart, offers protection during difficult astrological times. Choose good days for major events in your life and for compatability in major partnerships. Siva is a compassionate God and the way He set up astrology was compassionate; it goes back and forth between positive and negative periods.

Path To Siva, Lesson 39.

Click here to go to an index of all of Bodhinatha's and Gurudeva's online audio.

Path to Siva: What Is Our Heritage of Gurus?

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami

Bodhinatha's Latest Upadeshas - Commentaries on Path to Siva
What Is Our Heritage of Gurus? Path to Siva, Lesson 36 (December 27,2017)

"Since the beginning of time, the power, or shakti, of God Siva has been carried forth by enlightened beings, satgurus." Spiritual progress is achieved through abhyasa, daily practice, and vairagya, dispassion. Dispassion is being detached enough to be getting happiness from inside ourself not outside from the world. Control awareness; find and claim joyousness and peace every day in all environments. "Naam ariyom-We do not know." When we get really deep inside to find the deepest truth it can not be explained.

Path To Siva, Lesson 36.

Click here to go to an index of all of Bodhinatha's and Gurudeva's online audio.

Why Is the Satguru So Important? Path to Siva Lesson 35

Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami

Bodhinatha's Latest Upadeshas - Commentaries on Path to Siva
Why Is the Satguru So Important? , Lesson 35 (November 19,2017) Also available in the SivaSiva App.

The satguru helps his devotees mover closer to God, deeper into themselves, into the sat, the real,the truth. Turn away from the world/asat--that which is not the truth, to find the truth/sat. Sat has no beginning and no end; it is eternal. The world is relatively real, it exists but is constantly changing. That which is absolutely real exists and is changeless. The satguru is trying to help you find that part of us that doesn't change/sat.

Path To Siva, Lesson 35.

Click here to go to an index of all of Bodhinatha's and Gurudeva's online audio.


SivaSiva App Now Available for Android Phones!

SivaSiva App

Jai Ganesha and Happy Pancha Ganapati to all our Android users! SivaSiva is now available for your devices. Search "SivaSiva" all one word in Google Play or the App Store (for iOS) Thanks especially to all our Digital Dharma Drive supporters whose contributions have made this, and more to come, possible.

Go to Google Play
iTunes/AppStore

The Profound Wisdom,
Awesome Beauty and
Modern Toolbox of
God Siva’s Realm.

“Thank you! The best tool ever. I am appreciating this amazing App, using it everyday. Making a big change for learning, reading and listening to all the body of work of Gurudeva and Satguru Bodhinatha.”
-- Rajeswari Parasivam

“The SivaSiva app...it is mind-blowing. The first talk I listened to was from Gurudeva’s 1970 audio course, his talk on The Mind of Light and while I often listen to upadeshas on the website, both Bodhinatha’s and Gurudevas, this took me to a whole new place. So there it is, a lifetime of transformation available in the palm of one’s hand. Who would have thought!”
-- Janani Jananayagam

The Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

Here at the monastery the Ganapati Kulam is busy developing the next issue of Hinduism Today. One of the articles called "From the Agamas" now features Upanishads translated by Sarvapelli Radhakrishnan, an Indian philosopher, author and statesman. He was India’s first Vice President (1952–1962) and second President (1962–1967). The following is a translation of the Brhad-Aranyaka Upanishad—chapter 2, section 4—meaning "Of the Great Forest.". This longest and most revered Upanishad features the dialogue between a great sage, Yajnavalkya, and his wife Maitreyi. Yajnavalkya has just reached a critical juncture in his life where he is about to leave home in the pursuit of truth, or Self-realization. Maitreyi shares his yearning for immortality, and so the parting dialogue between them turns into a deep session of “spiritual instruction” - one of the meanings of the word Upanishad. "Maitreyi,” said Yajnavalkya, “I am about to go forth from this state. Come, let me make a final settlement between you and Katyayani.” "My lord," said Maitreyi, "if all the world's wealth were mine, would I be immortal through those means?" "No," replied Yajnavalkya, "Your life would be the same as that of the rich. Of immortality, however, there is no hope through wealth." Maitreyi then asked, "Of what use then are money and material possessions to me? Please tell me, bhagavan, of the way that leads to immortality." "Ah, Maitreyi, you have always been dear to me, even more now that you have asked me about immortality. Come, sit down, I will explain to you. Reflect deeply on what I say." ...The final article will be published in the months ahead

Character Building Workbook Series: Abstemious

Character Building Workbook--Expanding Our Virtues

The monastery published the Character Building Workbook in 2015 as "a tool to help children and adults build, transform and improve their character." The workbook guides seekers toward goals of self-restraint, self-reliance, productivity and to have an overall sense of strength in character. To teach virtue is sometimes regarded as impossible, and whether it can be taught or is remembered is a deep philosophical matter in and of itself. Whatever the truth may be, Eastern sages and wisemen of history such as saint Avayar, Tirumular, Tiruvalluvar, and Western philosophers and Stoics such as Socrates, Plato and Epictetus, have all tried their best to, if at all possible, teach what they regarded as virtue in character and action.

A new series on our Monastery blog will be to take the sixty-four character traits and expand on them, one by one, and see if we can get a better understanding of our magnificent and complex virtuous soul nature. We begin with the first trait: Abstemious.

abstemious
adjective
not self-indulgent, especially when eating and drinking

Synonyms: self-denying, temperate, abstinent, moderate, self-disciplined, restrained, self-restrained


Abstemiousness is a quality that spiritual seekers must have. There is no denying that without some form of restriction yogis, swamis and sadhaka of the Hindu faith would not be able to bring eternal truths down to our normal plane of reality. Whether it be with foods that we all know we shouldn't be eating in excess, or activities that bog us down and make our lives miserable--self-denial and restriction often make us much more effective human beings at the same time making us more receptive to the shakti of a temple deity.

In our search through life we end up seeking some sort of wholeness or some completeness that either rebuilds us after losing our way or we simply just get older and more mature--usually that means the age we stop partying and start to realize we have to do something with our lives and actually make something of ourselves. In other words, we become aware that we are consciousness as we get older and living inside an excessive world starts to just feel bad. Our highest potential and soul nature often wants to avoid indulgent behavior, but that doesn't mean it comes naturally. Abstemious does not mean you become perfect, it means you sacrifice that which is easy for that which is hard. Over time we can expect change but this isn't an overnight experience. In the words of my guru Satguru Bodhinatha Veylanswami, we want progress not perfection.


A Word on Not Succeeding

What happens when your attempt at being abstemious doesn't work? Historically great souls do not avoid failures, pitfalls and distractions, what they do is overcome them over time. Anticipating failure can be a powerful tool to keep you from entering despair and frustration as you take a few steps towards your goal, and a few backwards. No boxer has ever entered a ring expecting a perfect match and to never be hit. He trains for the hit, anticipates challenge and is determined to get back up when it happens, not if it happens. Progress not perfection.

Where Does Abstemious Lead?

Using moderation in an effort to clear the subconscious and uphold a higher moral standard means we are on the path of self-denial and sacrifice. We give up those things that are no longer any use to us and to our goals. This takes constant effort, and to retrain the mind and body will often require being attentive to our weaknesses and keeping our guru informed every step of the way. The waking hours isn't enough either; as we know from Gurudeva's teaching, our sleep and dreams must also be a place of purity if want to completely own up to the duty we have as seekers on the path.

Aristotle's teaching on the subject is truly timeless, "For moral virtue or excellence is closely concerned with pleasure and pain. It is pleasure that moves us to do what is base, and pain that moves us to refrain from what is noble. And therefore, as Plato says, man needs to be so trained from his youth up as to find pleasure and pain in the right objects. This is what sound education means."

The Tirukkural's chapter on virtuous conduct is no less relevant,
"Virtuous conduct leads a man to eminent greatness. Therefore, it should be guarded as more precious than life itself."

We end with the Workbook's assignment for the weeks ahead: For the next two weeks, when tempted to eat or drink too much, restrain that desire by using your willpower, eating and drinking a reasonable amount.

Get the Workbook and comment below if you like this content

Connect with us on:
YouTube
Facebook

Archives are now available through 2001. Light colored days have no posts. 1998-2001 coming later.

Subscribe to RSS Feed
Audio Video Slideshows Images Publications Web pages